Posts Tagged ‘Etta James’

Etta James: So long Etta!

Etta James (January 25 1938 – January 21 2012)

















There are no words to describe the legacy of Etta James. Her music was powerfully touching and affecting – and it came out her her with the full force of her body and soul. Her voice, her musicality, her spirit and her raw emotion gave her songs an unforgettable edge – an immediacy  that stained the memory with their imprint. I remember listening to her songs on the radio in my apartment,  and being transported to whatever world she created in that instant in my life – stopping a conversation or lighting a cigarette to go into that place in my head where the lyrics could take hold of me and take me out of my day. I remember  nights in the ’80’s –  around closing time in a lesbian bar  – I think it was Freddie’s  –  here in Denver, when sometimes the D.J  would knock off  a little early, and someone would put some quarters in the jukebox  and  the old songs would bring a new group of dancers who would  move onto the floor and slow dance to those songs –  “My Dearest Darling”, “At Last”,   ” A Sunday Kind of Love”   – and this voice could make you long fiercely for the kind of love she sang about. I remember some of those faces caught  in a slant of  dim light – young and (to us 20 somethings and thirty somethings) old, women in each others’ embrace, just dancing, and the nostalgia and memories that would fill the air was something palpably felt.  So Goodbye and Goodnight Miss Etta – you were a part of my life then, and you will always be. Just keep on singing wherever you are.


Here is a  rather large selection – because it was so hard to choose – from a time that was.


At Last

A Sunday Kind of Love

My Dearest Darling

Teach Me Tonight

Don’t Cry Baby

If I Can’t Have You

Anything to Say Your’e Mine

Trust in me

Embraceable You

Body and Soul

The Very Thought of You

I Don’t Stand the Ghost of a Chance with You

How Deep is the Ocean

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